Divorce is a confusing time, and child custody just makes it worse. Couples are not always aware of what custody arrangements are possible and which one is best considering their circumstances. Michigan recognizes a few different custody arrangements that couple can choose from to better suit the needs of your child.
Child Custody in Michigan
When child custody is an issue, the most important thing to take into consideration is the well-being of a couple’s child or children. A parent’s wishes are relevant but not the most important factor to be considered.
Below are the common child custody arrangements recognized by Michigan:
Sole legal custody
Sole physical custody
Joint physical custody
Joint legal custody
If you are unsure what custody arrangement will work best for you and your child, USAttorneys recommends you speak with child custody lawyer in Michigan and have them explain the differences.
What Child Custody Arrangement is Preferred by Michigan’s Family Court?
Michigan’s family courts prefer to award parents joint custody, but they are primarily concerned with ensuring that best interests of the child take precedence. That sometimes means judges may award one sole parent custody and can even deny one parent visitation if they have been physical, sexually or verbally abusive or pose another danger.
Best Interest of the Child Standards in Michigan
The Michigan Child Custody Act looks at the following and more when trying to determine the best interest of a child:
- The emotional ties between a child and parent.
- The ability of each parent to provide love, affection and be a positive role-model in a child’s upbringing.
- The ability of each parent to provide shelter, food, clothing and medical care.
- Which parent remains in the family home.
- The mental and physical well-being
- The preference of a child if they are mature enough to convey their wishes.
Other factors are taken into consideration under the Michigan Child Custody Act of 1970. You can also learn more about those standards by speaking with a child custody lawyer in Michigan.
Who Decides Child Custody?
Under Michigan law, parents have the option of deciding child custody independent of the family court. If you and your spouse can work together, our child custody lawyers recommend you determine child custody and visitation outside the court. Doing this will give parents more control over their time and the time they get to spend with their child. Family courts prefer when couples come up without the interference of a court since no one is better suited to address the needs of a child than their parents.
When a couple cannot agree, the family court will step in and award custody, but this puts both parents at the mercy of a judge, and they may not be happy with the outcome. If you and your estranged spouse or partner are having trouble negotiating child custody or visitation, let USAttorneys connect you with a child custody lawyer in Michigan. Call and set up a case evaluation today.